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Department of Justice
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 17, 2019

Former Hopi Indian Reservation Ranger Convicted in Arizona on Sexual Assault Charges and Destruction of Evidence

A federal jury in the District of Arizona convicted Mackenzie Davis, 25, a former Ranger with the Hopi Resource Enforcement Services, of sexually assaulting a female arrestee in his custody and destroying evidence to cover up his crimes.

“Any law enforcement officer who uses his official authority to target and sexually assault a person in his custody will be held accountable,” said Assistant Attorney General Dreiband. “The Department of Justice commends the victim who came forward to report this reprehensible conduct, so that this officer’s crimes could see the light of day.” 

“A sexual assault is doubly devastating to the victim when perpetrated by a law-enforcement officer whose only duty was to protect her from such harm,” said Michael Bailey, U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona. “It’s also a breach of the community’s trust, and an affront to work of the earnest and honest officers who sacrifice daily on our behalf.”

“The FBI will not tolerate officials who abuse their authority and violate the very people they were sworn to protect,” said Sean Kaul, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Phoenix Field Office. “We too commend the victim who came forward to report this crime. The FBI will continue to work alongside our state, local, federal, and tribal law enforcement partners to protect all of our communities and hold those who abuse their positions of power, accountable.”

Evidence presented at trial established that on Nov. 15, 2016, Davis arrested the victim for driving under the influence. During a nearly two-hour transport to a detention center, Davis pulled over onto the side of the road and sexually assaulted C.A. Another witness testified that he engaged in similar conduct with her five years prior, when he was not a law enforcement officer.   

A jury found Davis guilty of violating C.A.’s civil rights, abusive sexual contact in Indian Country, and destruction of evidence.

The defendant was remanded into custody and sentencing is set for Feb. 24, 2020. The defendant faces up to 23 years imprisonment.

The case was investigated by the Flagstaff Resident Agency of the Phoenix Division of the FBI and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Abbie Broughton Marsh, and Special Litigation Counsel Fara Gold and Trial Attorney Maura White of the Civil Rights Division.

Topic(s): 
Civil Rights
Press Release Number: 
19-1116
Updated October 17, 2019